Following a brief car chase, a vehicle packed with 14 undocumented immigrants crashed on Sunday after the driver lost control and ran off the road, causing the van to flip over several times. During the crash, the van’s passengers were ejected from the vehicle, and five of them were killed.
The chase started when an immigration agent stationed about 50 miles from the Mexican border saw three reportedly suspicious-looking vans drive past. After stopping one vehicle and making several arrests, the agent radioed the descriptions of the two other vehicles to his colleagues. The second vehicle was also stopped, and arrests were made.
But when police tried to pull over the third vehicle, instead of stopping, the driver took off, according to CNN. A Dimmit County Sheriff was called in to take over the chase just west of Big Wells, Texas, shortly before the fatal accident. When the van crashed, it was traveling at more than 100 miles per hour.
Dimmit County Sheriff Marion Boyd said “we’ve seen this many, many times, not only in this county but in other counties along the border.” He added that accidents like this are “a perfect example” of why the US should build a wall along its southern border.
“I think we need a wall, in my opinion,” he said, voicing support for President Donald Trump’s proposal to construct a border wall with Mexico.
Boyd added: “If it can be built, I think it needs to be built. But along with that, there needs to be cameras. There needs to be sensors.”
When asked why border patrol agents had singled out the van, Boyd said “good police work” was the reason they pulled it over, according to News 4 San Antonio. He added that the crash was yet another reason why the south needs a border wall and beefed up security like sensors.
Boyd added that he didn’t know where the immigrants were from, but said that most of the undocumented who travel through that part of Texas are from Mexico or Central America. Boyd added that his deputies are often involved in chases with suspects carrying drugs or undocumented people. He added that the driver of the car, who is believed to be a US citizen, was known to police in the area.